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18
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4answers
576 views

When can a global symmetry be gauged?

Take a classical field theory described by a local Lagrangian depending on a set of fields and their derivatives. Suppose that the action possesses some global symmetry. What conditions have to be ...
13
votes
4answers
735 views

To which extent is general relativity a gauge theory?

In quantum mechanics, we know that a change of frame -- a gauge transform -- leaves the probability of an outcome measurement invariant (well, the square modulus of the wave-function, i.e. the ...
11
votes
2answers
481 views

If gauge symmetries are fake, then why do we care if they are anomalous?

My understanding is that gauge symmetries are fake in that they are only redundancies of our description of the system that we put in (either knowingly or unknowingly) see Gauge symmetry is not a ...
11
votes
1answer
203 views

**Group structure** in Chern-Simons theory?

A non-Abelian Chern-Simons(C-S) has the action $$ S=\int L dt=\int \frac{k}{4\pi}Tr[\big( A \wedge d A + (2/3) A \wedge A \wedge A \big)] $$ We know that the common cases, $A=A^a T^a$ is the ...
8
votes
0answers
124 views

Gauge fields in Polyakov's treatment of renormalization for nonlinear sigma model

I am deriving the results of renormalization for nonlinear sigma model using Polyakov approach. I am closely following chapter 2 of Polyakov's book--- ``Gauge fields and strings''. Action for the ...
7
votes
2answers
591 views

How does non-Abelian gauge symmetry imply the quantization of the corresponding charges?

I read an unjustified treatment in a book, saying that in QED charge an not quantized by the gauge symmetry principle (which totally clear for me: Q the generator of $U(1)$ can be anything in ...
7
votes
1answer
130 views

Request for Reference: BRST formalism/transformations

Could anyone please suggest a very basic paper/reference/literature on BRST symmetry/formalism that requires rudimentary knowledge of Dirac's method for dealing with constrained systems and generation ...
7
votes
1answer
209 views

Invariance of Functional Integration Measure

Let us consider the functional integral: \begin{equation} \int \mathcal{D} A e^{iS[A]} \end{equation} where $S[A]$ is the action for $U(1)$ gauge field and \begin{equation} \mathcal{D}A\equiv ...
7
votes
1answer
69 views

Connection beween infinite gauge symmetries and UV finiteness

In e.g., http://arxiv.org/abs/arXiv:0712.3526 the author claims: Since the massless higher-spin field theories involve infinite-dimensional gauge symmetries, one expects that such theories may be ...
6
votes
3answers
492 views

Gauge invariant Chern-Simons Lagrangian

I have to prove the (non abelian) gauge invariance of the following lagrangian (for a certain value of $\lambda$): $$\mathcal L= -\frac14 F^{\mu\nu}_aF_{\mu\nu}^a + ...
6
votes
4answers
335 views

Can an Electromagnetic Gauge Transformation be Imaginary?

The Hamiltonian of a non-relativistic charged particle in a magnetic field is $$\hat{H}~=~\frac{1}{2m} \left[\frac{\hbar}{i}\vec\nabla - \frac{q}{c}\vec A\right]^2$$. Under a gauge transformation ...
6
votes
2answers
456 views

Intuition for gauge parallel transport (Wilson loops)

I'm looking for a geometrical interpretation of the statement that "Wilson loop is a gauge parallel transport". I have seen QFT notes describe U(x,y) as "transporting the gauge transformation", and ...
6
votes
2answers
134 views

The gauge covariant derivative and it's substitution

I was wondering wether it would make a difference (in general) if I were to were introduce the gauge covariant derivative $$D_\mu=\partial_\mu+ieA_\mu$$ In the Lagrangian density and then derive the ...
6
votes
1answer
68 views

“gauge fixed world-sheet action”

My question is in reference to the action in equation 4.130 of Becker, Becker and Schwartz. It reads as, $S_{matter}= \frac{1}{2\pi}\int (2\partial X^\mu \bar{\partial}X_\mu + \frac{1}{2}\psi^\mu ...
6
votes
3answers
822 views

Why can't gauge bosons have mass?

Clearly, a mass term for a vector field would render the Lagrangian not gauge-invariant, but what are the consequences of this? Gauge invariance is supposed to be crucial for the renormalisation of a ...
6
votes
1answer
98 views

What do people mean by gauge invariance of the normalization of field?

Lets have the scalar Klein-Gordon field interacting with EM field: $$ L = \partial_{\mu}\varphi \partial^{\mu}\varphi - m^2\varphi \varphi^{*} - j_{\mu}A^{\mu} + q^{2} A_{\mu}A^{\mu}\varphi ...
5
votes
1answer
171 views

Gauge invariance and Bohm-Aharonov effect

I am confused with the Bohm-Aharonov effect: though quantum mechanics is said to be gauge invariant, the presence of a solenoid imposes a gauge. I used to think that a phase shift did not change ...
5
votes
1answer
230 views

6 independent Einstein field equations?

I can't understand the comment on page 409, Gravitation, by Misner, Thorne, Wheeler It follows that the ten components $G_{\alpha\beta} =8\pi T_{\alpha\beta}$ of the field equation must not ...
5
votes
1answer
135 views

How do non-transverse photon polarizations cancel in Euclidean QED?

First, recall how to write scattering amplitudes in covariant fashion in Minkowskian QED. One starts by considering some process with an external photon whose momentum is chosen to be ...
4
votes
2answers
365 views

Why is the “canonical momentum” for the Dirac equation not defined in terms of the “gauge covariant derivative”?

The canonical momentum is always used to add an EM field to the Schrödinger/Pauli/Dirac equations. Why does one not use the gauge covariant derivative? As far as I can see, the difference is a factor ...
4
votes
3answers
266 views

Problems with putting mass on Yang-Mills theory by hand

When Yang-Mills field theory was introduced, a problem is that the gauge invariance can not allow mass for the gauge field. Later people invented spontaneous symmetry breaking and Higgs mechanism to ...
4
votes
2answers
360 views

Gauge fixing and equations of motion

Consider an action that is gauge invariant. Do we obtain the same information from the following: Find the equations of motion, and then fix the gauge? Fix the gauge in the action, and then find the ...
4
votes
3answers
244 views

Why gauge theories have such a success?

[This question was inspired by a identical question asked on a other forum] Note that we may morally include general relativity in the gauge theories. We may have several (some are deliberately ...
4
votes
1answer
219 views

Is reparameterization invariance some kind of gauge symmetry?

On page 116 of this book it is said, that reparameterization invariance of the string action is analogous to the gauge invariance in electrodynamices. Whereas Maxwell's equations are symmetric under ...
4
votes
1answer
160 views

Why Must Conserved Currents of Lorentz Symmetry Satisfy the Lorentz Algebra

I've seen it written many times that the commutation relation $[M^{I-},M^{J-}]=0$ is required for Lorentz invariance in the light cone gauge quantisation of the bosonic string. This follows ...
4
votes
2answers
313 views

The physicality of the photon propagator

The equation for the photon propagator is straightforward $$ D_{ij} = \langle 0 |T \{ A_{i}(x')A_{j}(x) \}|0 \rangle $$ However, $A_{i}(x)$ is gauge-dependent and therefore unphysical (in the arguable ...
4
votes
1answer
494 views

Noether current for the Yang-mills-higgs lagrangian

I am trying to calculate the Noether's current, more specifically, the energy density of the Yang-mills-Higgs Lagrangian. Please refer to the equations in the Harvey lectures on Magnetic Monopoles, ...
4
votes
1answer
493 views

Is spacetime an illusion?

In consistent histories, for gauge theories, can the projection operators used in the chains be not gauge invariant? In quantum gravity, for a projection operator to be gauge invariant means it has ...
4
votes
0answers
100 views

gauge invariance of the Feynman amplitudes

When we calculate the photon polarization sums over amplitudes, $$X=\sum\limits_{r=1}^{2}|\mathcal M_r|^2=\mathcal M_\alpha\mathcal M_\beta^*\sum\limits_{r=1}^{2}\epsilon_r^\alpha\epsilon_r^\beta$$ ...
4
votes
2answers
194 views

Local guage symmety implies causality

I read in a QFT book that local gauge symmetry implies causality. Could someone please explain that statement and why it's true? Thank you.
3
votes
1answer
356 views

Large gauge transformations

I would like to understand what is the importance of large gauge transformations. I read that these gauge transformation cannot be deformed to the identity, but why should we care about that?
3
votes
1answer
278 views

What conservation law corresponds to this local $U(1)$ symmetry of the CCR?

It is known that canonical commutation relations do not fix the form of momentum operator. That means that if canonical commutation relations (CCR) are given by ...
3
votes
2answers
119 views

Cosmological relativistic effects : misunderstanding between cosmological and relativistic communities?

I would like to clarify something that mixes cosmology and relativistic effects. Maybe I'm not understanding something or maybe there a difference of vocabulary between the cosmological and the ...
3
votes
1answer
51 views

Is obtaining the coordinate representation of momentum operator from commutator more fundamental than generator of translation

Related post: What is the most general expression for the coordinate representation of momentum operator? There are two methods of obtaining the coordinate representation of momentum in quantum ...
3
votes
1answer
258 views

How to introduce the electromagnetic field in Quantum Field Theory?

There are many ways to introduce the electromagnrtic field in Quantum Field Theory(QFT), such as canonical quantization method which introduces the creation and annihilation oprators by treating the ...
3
votes
1answer
87 views

What are type system examples of local gauge transformation- and field strength-like objects?

This is essentially a follow up motivated by this answer to my question about the gauge transformation interpretation of identity types. A field $$\psi:\mathcal M\to\mathbb C^n$$ is a section of the ...
3
votes
1answer
94 views

Are the symmetry operators well defined in the context of Projective Symmetry Group(PSG)?

Consider the Schwinger-fermion approach $\mathbf{S}_i=\frac{1}{2}f_i^\dagger\mathbf{\sigma}f_i$ to spin-$\frac{1}{2}$ system on 2D lattices. Just as Prof.Wen said in his seminal paper on PSG, the ...
3
votes
0answers
141 views

Wilson lines, boundary conditions, surface defects of TQFTs

I asked the following question in mathematics stack exchange but I'd like to have answers from physicists too; I have been studying (extended) topological quantum field theories (in short TQFTs) from ...
3
votes
0answers
204 views

Gauge invariance of gg->gg scattering amplitude?

I'm trying to calculate the spin and color averaged gg->gg cross section, and I am stumbling upon gauge invariance: Must the amplitude not be invariant under replacements $\epsilon_i \to \epsilon_i + ...
3
votes
0answers
177 views

Attempts to explain Higgs coupling as a gauge transformation symmetry

As is (supposedly) well known, Electromagnetic coupling can be "explained" as a closure term to a langrangian comprising a free Dirac field and a free vector field that are required to be invariant ...
2
votes
2answers
241 views

Is the artificial gauge field a gauge field?

The so-called artificial gauge fields are actually the Berry connection. They could be $U(1)$ or $SU(N)$ which depends on the level degeneracy. For simplicity, let's focus on $U(1)$ artificial gauge ...
2
votes
2answers
157 views

A question for the generalization of gauge transformation with two antisymmetric indices

I have a question about the generalization of gauge transformation with two antisymmetric indices. Starting from Eq. (3.7.6) in Polchinski's string theory book p. 108. $$S_{\sigma} = \frac{1}{4 \pi ...
2
votes
1answer
293 views

Invariance, covariance and symmetry

Though often heard, often read, often felt being overused, I wonder what are the precise definitions of invariance and covariance. Could you please give me an example from quantum field theory? ...
2
votes
1answer
66 views

Why gauge invariance for electromagnetic fields?

What is the physical constraint that gauge invariance is a required condition for electromagnetic fields? What would happen if the electromagnetic fields were not gauge invariant?
2
votes
2answers
517 views

Vector Potential and Gauge Invariance in Quantum Mechanics

In classical electromagnetism, we are allowed to use gauge invariance through the argument that the only physical observable fields are the $E$-field and the $B$-field. So in that sense the scalar ...
2
votes
1answer
70 views

Field strength vanishes iff $A_{\mu}$ is pure gauge

Is it true that the field strength $F_{\mu\nu}$ in a non-abelian YangMills case with gauge group $G$ vanishes is and only if the gauge field $A_{\mu}$ is a pure gauge? I can show one implication. ...
2
votes
1answer
626 views

Lorenz and Coulomb gauge-fixing conditions

Lorenz and Coulomb gauge-fixing conditions. What is physical difference between these two gauge-fixing conditions? Mathematical expression are clear but how to we choose one of these means what they ...
2
votes
1answer
317 views

The gauge-invariance of the probability current

It is simple to show that under the gauge transformation $$\begin{cases}\vec A\to\vec A+\nabla\chi\\ \phi\to\phi-\frac{\partial \chi}{\partial t}\\ \psi\to \psi ...
2
votes
2answers
195 views

Charged quantum particle in a magnetic field - choosing a different gauge leads to different wavefunctions

Consider a charged quantum particle confined to the $xy$ plane, subject to a magnetic field $\mathbf{B}=B\hat{z}$. The Hamiltonian is: $$ H = \frac{1}{2m} \left( \mathbf{p} - \frac{e ...
2
votes
1answer
176 views

A naive question on the $U(1)$ gauge transformation of electromagnetic field?

For simplicity, in the following we set the electric charge $e=1$ and consider a lattice spinless free electron system in an external static magnetic field $\mathbf{B}=\nabla\times\mathbf{A}$ ...